CHESAPEAKE, Va. (AP) -- Crews searching the Great Dismal Swamp for a plane from Florida that didn't reach its Virginia destination have spotted the wreckage of a small aircraft.
Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller says the crew of a privately owned helicopter assisting in the search saw the wreckage shortly after 4 p.m. Friday and notified police. She says ground crews were still trying to make their way to the site in an extremely remote section of the swamp Friday evening.
64 year old Charles Rodd, and 58 year old Diane Rodd from Boynton Beach, died in the crash.
Authorities say the pilot, 61 year old Theodore Bradshaw, and his wife, 48 year Mary Ann Bradshaw from Fort Lauderdale, also died in the crash.
According to Lt. Curtis Hardison from Virginia State Police Division, Theodore Bradshaw was a experience pilot with over 30 years of experience. The Bradshaw's and their friends were going to a family wedding, when the plane crashed half a mile from the Great Dismal Swamp, where the last signal came from at 12:09 p.m. on Thursday.
“We want to express our sincere appreciation to Hampton Roads Helicopters for their critical assistance with this search mission,” said Lt. Curtis Hardison. “They not only supplied us with the necessary aerial support we needed to expedite this search operation, but provided two hours of flight time free of charge. Their generosity also helped bring closure to the families of those who lost their lives in this tragic crash.”
The search began Thursday after the Cessna took off from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., for the Hampton Roads Executive Airport in Chesapeake but never made it.
The FAA and NTSB have both been notified. The cause of the crash remains under investigation at this time.
Virginia State Police contributed to this report.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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